Indeed, freshwater is a very important resource, and hence, every American needs to follow a proper water storage strategy. Did you know? Rather than using your drinking water reserve for your garden, you can instead prepare a rainwater reserve using rain barrels. That is not just economical, but also highly beneficial.
After all, rainwater does not contain any lime, calcium, or other chemical impurities. Furthermore, the pH value of rainwater is just right for your plants to grow well. However, choosing the right rain barrels kits is not as easy as it sounds.
But worry not, because, in this article, we will help you out with that. First, we will take you through our top 10 water barrels for rainwater round-up. After that, we shall discuss the benefits of rain barrels, various factors that you must consider before buying, an installation guide, and some FAQs.
So, without any further ado, let us get started!
- Our Top Picks
- Best Rain Barrels Review
- 1.Good Ideas RW50 Rain Barrel
- Final Verdict
- 2.RTS Companies Eco-Friendly Rain Barrel
- 3.VINGLI Collapsible Rain Barrel
- 4.Enviro World EWC FreeGarden Rain Barrel
- 5.Augason Farms Water Barrel
- 6.Suncast Rain Barrel
- 7.Gardener’s Supply Company Rain Barrel
- 8.FCMP Outdoor RC4000 Rain Barrel
- 9.Upcycle Black Rain Barrel
- 10.Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel
- Benefits of Rain Barrels
- Factors to Consider When Choosing a Rain Barrel
- Rain Barrel Installation
- FAQs (frequently asked questions)
Our Top Picks
RTS Companies – Eco-Friendly Rain Barrel
Best Environmentally Friendly Rain Barrel – It is made from an eco-friendly recycled plastic material.
VINGLI Collapsible Rain Barrel – Best Portable Rain Barrel
It features a collapsible PVC construction, which increases its portability.
Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel – Best Aesthetic Rain Barrel
This is the best-looking rain barrel in this round-up, with a stunning design and high-end artificial leaves.
Best Rain Barrels Review
The Good Ideas RW50 Rain Barrel is a premium barrel featuring a capacity of 50 gallons. It features a top-notch polyethylene resin construction that is resistant to UV rays. Furthermore, this material does not rust or rot with changing weather conditions.
It also features a spigot made of brass that makes it easy for you to fill your buckets up. You may as well attach a water hose with it, to water your plants easily.
Perhaps the best thing about the Good Ideas RW50 Rain Barrel is its overall design and aesthetics. Featuring a wood grain texture, this is one of the top rain barrels in the market. Also, it comes in four finishes including green, black, khaki, and oak.
Overall, users are quite satisfied with this rain barrel. However, some users have complained about leaks forming in the barrel after a few weeks of usage. This issue might be rare, but it is certainly a possibility. Furthermore, some buyers also complain that it does not catch rainwater as efficiently as other options.
- An amazing look
- Comes with a spigot
- Tough material
- Multiple color options
- Does not catch rainwater efficiently
The Good Ideas RW50 Rain Barrel is a decent choice, considering its tough construction and aesthetics. However, it is not the most practical option. Though, this rainwater barrel has great aesthetics. Hence, it can add a lot of life and character to your garden.
The RTS Companies Eco-Friendly Rain Barrels are a perfect choice for those who are into sustainable living. After all, this rain barrel is eco-friendly. Rather than wood, this rain barrel is made of fully recycled plastic. Hence, it will not break or develop leaks, unlike other options.
It comes covered with a plastic screen that helps prevent the accumulation of debris and dust. Along with that, the plastic has a rusty texture, to improve your garden’s overall character.
It also features a tough spigot with an ergonomic design, that makes it easy for you to link a hose up. Overall, when it comes to usability and practicality, the RTS Companies Eco-Friendly Rain Barrel might just be one of the best rain barrels out there.
While most buyers say that the RTS Companies Eco-Friendly Rain Barrel gets the work done, some buyers complain about its inaccurate construction. For instance, some buyers have complained about receiving faulty units. In some units, the hole on which the spigot is attached is way too large, resulting in leaks. However, most units are useble.
- Fully eco-friendly
- Tough construction
- Good texture
- Ergonomic barrel design
- Plastic finishing is not top-notch
The RTS Companies Eco-Friendly Rain Barrel is primarily designed for people who prefer eco-friendly items. If you prefer to buy goods made of recycled plastic, then this rain barrel is for you. Otherwise, you may want to consider alternate options.
Next up, we have the VINGLI Collapsible Rain Barrel. This is one of the top rain barrels out there, due to its portability and strong frame. It features a PVC construction, which prevents corrosion and cracking. It also features an outlet for water along with a nicely constructed spigot.
The portability of this rain barrel is its most notable aspect. Furthermore, it comes in three sizes. You can either get the 100-gallon size, 66-gallon size, or the 50-gallon size. This, of course, depends on your water storage requirements.
Most users that have bought the VINGLI Collapsible Rain Barrel love it due to its portability. This rain barrel is easy to collapse, which means that users can put it away to save space during dry seasons. Overall, the feedback regarding this rain barrel is positive.
- High-quality construction
- Strong PVC material
- Portable (collapsible)
- Not aesthetic
- Simple design
The VINGLI Collapsible Rain Barrel is a rain barrel that focuses simply on functionality and less on the looks. While this rain barrel does not have the best aesthetics, it will get the job done just right.
The Enviro World EWC FreeGarden Rain Barrel is one of the toughest and most durable water barrels for rainwater out there. It features a 55 gallons rainwater capacity. Along with that, this water barrel also has a child-locking screw for extra safety.
Another notable aspect of the Enviro World EWC FreeGarden Rain Barrel is its good design. While this water barrel is made of plastic, it looks just decent enough in any corner. However, it may not be a great choice for people who want a higher aesthetic value.
Furthermore, the square shape of the barrel just makes it very easy for homeowners to place it in a corner.
Most of the reviews of the Enviro World EWC FreeGarden Rain Barrel on the internet are positive. However, some people express their concerns about their rain barrels kits developing cracks on the bottom. This resulted in leakages. However, this is quite rare.
- Square design for better useability
- Good finishing
- Strong plastic construction
- Not very aesthetic
- The spigot is placed a little higher
The Enviro World EWC FreeGarden Rain Barrel is not great in terms of aesthetics. This rain barrel has a very basic look. However, its square design is very practical. So, this is a good option for as long as you keep it tucked away in a corner.
Augason Farms is notable for producing cheap rain barrels of exceptional quality. With a storage capacity of 55 gallons, the Augason Farms Water Barrel is constructed with high-density polyethylene. This food-grade material keeps the water fresh and is also a good choice to store water for emergency purposes.
This is a multi-purpose water barrel that you can also use to store rainwater. Though, note that it has a very simple and plain design. It does not have the most attractive design but will work well to store water.
Just about three feet high and two feet wide, this rain barrel is a great option for those who prefer simplicity and practicality.
Overall, users seem to be fully satisfied with the Augason Farms Water Barrel. People have reported using this barrel for multiple purposes (even to store drinking water).
- Multi-purpose water barrel
- Simple but practical
- Food-grade material
- Strong construction
- Not an aesthetic design
This is a multi-purpose barrel. You can either use it to store rainwater or to store drinking water for emergencies. After all, it is made of food-grade polyurethane material. So, consider the use cases before buying them.
Suncast rain barrel is among the top rain barrels kits available in the market. This rain barrel is specifically designed for a long-lasting function. However, it has a low water capacity of only 50 gallons. Nevertheless, its square design makes it suitable for almost all corners.
This is one of the few kits that come pre-assembled and ready to use right out of the box. It comes with a separate hose that you can attach to the barrel, and you are good to go.
Furthermore, using an extra pipe, you may also link two similar rain barrels together (especially if you live in a region with lots of rain).
According to most buyers, the Suncast Rain Barrel is an amazing option. Often, buyers prefer buying two of these for an increased capacity. With a positive outlook, this rain barrel is an impressive one.
- Practical design
- Sturdy material
- Comes with a water hose
- Can be attached with another barrel
- Minimum assembly required
- Low capacity as a single unit
If you want a rain barrel kit that is ready to use right out of the box, then the Augason Farms Rain Barrel is a great choice for you. You can fit it into any corner of the house, and it will serve your purpose well.
If you are looking for the best rain barrels, the Gardener’s Supply Company Rain Barrel might be a perfect option. This fancy-looking ran barrel makes your garden look very elegant. It features a contemporary design with a construction of polyurethane.
Furthermore, its UV-stable characteristics improve its useability. Even after years of usage, this rain barrel is not going to lose its great look.
This rain barrel has a high capacity of 75 gallons. Furthermore, you can easily attach a hose at the bottom onto the tap. With a stoneware olive jar look, the Gardener’s Supply Company Rain Barrel is indeed a fancy choice.
Most users buy the Gardener’s Supply Company Rain Barrel primarily due to its great looks. And surprisingly, most buyers seem to be satisfied with it. However, some people complain about faulty packaging but that is rare.
- Aesthetic design
- Good decorative piece
- High water capacity
The Gardener’s Supply Company Rain Barrel is a great option as this water barrel adds life to your garden. At the same time, it also does the job of storing water well. Those who are into fancy-looking rain barrels should consider buying this product.
The FCMP Outdoor RC4000 is a very simple yet sleek and aesthetic option that will add some decent character to your garden. It has a flat base and top design, with an opening that is large enough to capture the rain.
However, it has a low water capacity of only 45 gallons. So, do not expect this rain barrel to hold too much water. On the brighter side, it comes with a mesh screen that keeps debris, leaves, and insects out during thunderstorms.
With that, you can also install a water hose to this barrel. It also comes with a shut-off valve, overflow hose, and a hose clip.
According to most buyers, the FCMP Outdoor RC4000 Rain Barrel is a wonderful option for the price. It is sleek, attractive, and carries a classic look.
- Good finishing
- Good aesthetics
- Comes with an aluminum mesh screen
- Low water capacity
- A little expensive
The FCMP Outdoor RC4000 Rain Barrel might be slightly more expensive in comparison with other rain barrels. However, it looks amazing. Hence, it is suitable for house owners who hate the look of cheap plastic and want a traditional wooden look.
The Upcycle Black Rain Barrel is a very simple product that features a straightforward design. This rain barrel system is not meant for decorations. Rather, it is primarily designed to capture run and that is all.
It is made of food-grade recycled polyethylene. This means that you can also use it as an emergency drinking water storage. It carries a capacity of 55 gallons of water. Also, it comes with a mesh screen that keeps animals, leaves, and debris out.
Since this barrel is made of high-quality plastic, it will never rot or rust. Furthermore, it can withstand all harsh weather conditions. So, you do not have to worry about the look of the Upcycle Black Rain Barrel getting ruined in rain.
Most users consider the Upcycle Black Rain Barrel a useful product. However, some have complained about leaks and cracks in their units from the factory. It is rare, though.
- Simple and straight-forward
- High-quality construction
- Very basic look
- Relatively low water capacity
The Upcycle Black Rain Barrel is perfect for those who want a cheap and straightforward water barrel for rainwater that will get the job done. And that is what this rain barrel is designed for anyway.
The Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel is perhaps the most attractive option in this round-up. This rainwater barrel has a capacity of 50 gallons only. However, it has an overflow management system build-in along with a self-draining planter.
This rain barrel looks more like a decorative piece and less like a barrel. And that is what makes it look too attractive.
Overall, the Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel is perfect for modern gardens. Regardless of the corner, you will place it in, the Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel will make your garden look flawless.
Most users agree that the Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel is a beautiful and aesthetic addition to the garden. However, while it looks beautiful, some say that it is not the most functional choice. Though, we have seen mixed opinions about this one.
- Good aesthetics.
- Comes with a self-draining planter.
- Features an overflow management system.
- Low water capacity
If you simply cannot sacrifice the looks, the Good Ideas Imp-L50 Palm Rain Barrel will be a great addition to your garden. It gives off a very natural vibe and looks more like a decorative piece than a rain barrel.
Benefits of Rain Barrels
Well, installing a rain barrel system in your garden can be quite beneficial due to several reasons. Some of the most notable benefits of rain barrels include:
Improves quality of water and prevents runoff.
Typically, rainwater would simply run off into the sewer. In that case, it would also wash away the fertilizers and pesticides that you may have used in your garden. This is quite harmful to the environment, as much of these chemicals will also end up on the streets and driveways. Rain barrels solve this problem by collecting a big chunk of rainwater, which is clean and can be re-used later.
Healthy for Plants
Regular tap water contains chemicals and impurities such as calcium and lime. In comparison, rainwater is much cleaning. So, if you live in a region where there is plenty of rainfall, consider installing cheap rain barrels to make full use of this nature’s gift.
You see, if you collect the rainwater flowing down from your roof drains, you can prevent it from running over your yard. This can, in turn, reduce soil erosion and reduces nutrient wash-off.
Of course, this one is a no-brainer. By collecting free rainwater and re-using it in your garden later, you can save the costs of water. Even if you pay a fixed water cost per month, you will be doing the environment a big favor by conserving water.
Helps You Save Money
By using lesser municipal water, you will be saving significant costs in your water bills. Just imagine the long-term savings that you could get by simply investing in rain barrels, which would be a one-time cost.
Useful in Droughts
Are you living in a region where groundwater is quite scarce? Well, during the hot summer days, managing your garden could become a hassle due to the groundwater conservation restrictions. In such cases, a barrel full of rainwater could be very handy. After all, that is something that nature gives you for free.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Rain Barrel
Now, let us discuss some of the most important factors that you must consider before choosing rain barrels for your garden. Consider this section as a checklist that you can use when you head to the market or an online store.
Safety of Water
While rainwater itself is clean and free from chemicals, sometimes, it is can get polluted as it runs down your roof through the drain. Most of the time, such issues occur in older homes with lead paint on the drains or the roof. If small bits of this paint or other chemicals wash down your roof into the barrel, it could harm your garden’s health.
Your required Capacity
Another important thing to consider is the capacity that you need. You see, water barrels come in several sizes. For instance, you can find smaller barrels with only 40 gallons capacity for cheap. Similarly, if you want a mid-ranged barrel, consider buying one with a 60 gallons capacity.
If you want an even higher capacity, you may either buy a single barrel or two smaller barrels (such as with a capacity of 40 gallons each).
Some barrels are made with UV-resistant materials. We suggest you buy barrels that have UV protection since they are long-lasting and can withstand harsh environmental conditions. This especially important if a significant amount of sunlight would fall on your rain barrel.
Some rain barrels come with additional features that simply improve their functionality. For instance, an overflow system could be useful, as it will prevent water spillage against the walls. However, such features may not always be present in cheap rain barrels. So, choose accordingly.
Some barrels come with a mesh filter that keeps debris and leaves out. These filters also prevent small animals from making their way into the bucket. So, make sure that the rain barrel kits that you are considering come with a mesh filter.
Before choosing any rain barrel, check whether it comes with any accessories. While accessories may not always be necessary, they can significantly enhance the functionality of your rain barrels. For instance, the Fiskars Rain Barrel DiverterPro kit helps with over-flow and prevents spillage on your walls.
If the rainwater barrel does not come with any accessory pre-included, you may have to buy it separately.
Rain Barrel Installation
Not all rain barrels are built the same. Each model has a different design and varying specifications. Hence, for installation, you must follow the installation guide that may come along with your product. However, knowing the general method of installation always helps. That is as follows:
- First, you must choose the right spot for your rain barrel. Make sure that this spot is near a downspout to help drain the excess water away. Make sure that the base is leveled and study. Otherwise, the barrel may simply topple over due to instability.
- Find the right stand for the barrel that is strong enough to support its weight when full. Then, lay down a level through the barrel’s top towards the downspout. Now, put a mark on this downspout. After that, measure three inches below and put another mark.
- Drill a hole in the downspout. Some rain barrels come with pre-drilled holes that simply make the process easier.
- Choose the right spot to drill a hole for the drainpipe’s other end (optional).
- Attach a diverter with the downspout and tighten with some screws.
- Use a flexible hose to connect the diverter with the rain barrel.
- Take the lid off whenever it rains.
The above-mentioned steps may vary slightly or by a big factor depending on the design/features of your rain barrel. So, only consider these steps as a general source of reference.
FAQs (frequently asked questions)
What is the mesh screen?
Mesh screens are filters that are designed to stop anything that is bigger than the mesh size. In screens, the mesh size refers to the length and width of every individual unit’s space.
Can we connect two rain barrels together?
Yes, you can connect two rain barrels together by drilling holes and connected a pipe. However, if not done right, leakage could occur. Many rain barrels kits come with pre-drilled holes for attaching pipes connected with other barrels.
Where to put the rain barrel?
The best spot of rain barrels is usually right next to a corner from where it is easy to access the water that flows from the roof to the ground via a drain.
How much water can be collected?
For every 1 inch of rainfall, around 600 gallons of water can be collected from a roof that measures 100o square feet. Similarly, ½ inches of rainfall would yield 300 gallons of water if the roof size is kept the same. And so on.
What tools are required for installation?
Generally, to install rain barrels, you will need the following items:
- Measuring tape
- Pilot hole bit
- Hole saw
- Eye protection